Machine Learning (W4771)

Final Project

Due Date: Three-sentence proposal is due April 7 by email to Write-up is due Thursday April 27.

Reading: Chapters 6 and 5 of "Machine Learning" by Tom M. Mitchell.

Your assignment:

Select a machine learning project that interests you. You may work in a group consisting of 1-3 people total. Be careful to select something interesting, but managable in only a few weeks (with a week to do the writing). You will write a 5 (to max 13) page paper describing your work. This paper will include at least one paragraph each on at least two research papers that you will select.

Write a description of what you plan to do and email it as soon as possible, and before the deadline above. This should also include the two or more papers you will read. Feel free to ask us for further direction, insights and ideas.

Selecting research papers. The ability to assimilate papers written in the research level is a necessary part of your machine learning education because the field is new, and most applications of machine learning will require insight and experimentation that is at the borderline or even center of research issues. In other words, to use learning, you'll need to think for yourself a lot, and you'll want to consult other people's investigations.

A list of available papers and on-line search engines will be posted.

Project types In general, experimental projects fall into one of the following categories:

Project ideas Here is a small, non-exhaustive list of possible project ideas:


Your write-up should contain a written description of the experiments you conducted. Break the paper into several section, as follows. The introduction should start with the motivation, and then give an overview of the solution. A seperate "approach" section gives the details of your modification/experiment. The results section gives the numerical results and some analysis. The related work section describes the two or more research papers you read (there will be no penalty if they do not end up being related to the project you do, although you should attempt at this). Finaly, the conclusions section places the capital P on "perspective".

You are required to read the extensive guideline on writing your paper that is located as a link from the web page of this course. Also read the one on preparing your final presentation

email: evs at cs dot columbia dot edu